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Photo by Erik Cohen.

Pirate TV rebrands to SHU TV

Pirate TV is rebranding to SHU TV.

The current executive producer of SHU TV, Louis Pasculli, detailed what led up to the shift, starting with their advisor stepping down.

“We have a lot of great people that are part of the club, and we figured that we needed to see what to do next,” said Pasculli, a senior visual and sound media major with a concentration in sports media. “Luckily, we got some help. Our new advisor, Joseph Martinelli, did a fantastic job on his part for stepping up. And then we just started to get the ball rolling in terms of a rebrand and in terms of starting to plan stuff.”

Professor Martinelli started as advisor during the current spring semester, the week before spring break. Although the “timing was weird,” he agreed to oversee the club due to his background in television and his faith in the students involved.

“It was a little bit of a learning curve to learn the history of [PTV],” said Martinelli, the Senior Associate Dean of Development and External Affairs in the College of Human Development, Culture, and Media. “I’ve been learning about different things that need to be done. I think what we’re really blessed by is the students who want to work with SHU TV and build a whole new type of college television.”

Talking about the origins of the organization, Pasculli said that PTV has been providing campus news to Seton Hall students since the 1990s,. With that long history came many “highs and lows.”

“Right now, it’s one of the times where we’re not doing what we’d like to be doing,” Pasculli said. “PTV is always supposed to be a good presence on campus. And whether it’s called PTV or SHU TV, that’s one thing that we really want to drive home. We came up with the tagline of ‘by the students, for the students.’ I mean, that perfectly encapsulates exactly what we’re trying to do as a news organization on campus.”

Being an organization for the students means no longer being co-curricular. The rebrand to SHU TV comes after the program went from a co-curricular component of the Visual and Sound Media major to a campus club. Graham Marshman, the upcoming executive producer of SHU TV for the 2024-2025 academic year, said that not being “constrained” by the co-curricular status is beneficial to SHU TV.

“I think it’s really going to help with getting more people in because before, a lot of the people in higher-up positions were mainly VSM majors who had taken studio classes,” said Marshman, a sophomore communication major with a minor in visual and sound media. “There were a few exceptions, but now, for people who aren’t in that, like, realm of work, they may be inspired to join. You should be able to come to SHU TV and see a comfortable, fun environment for you to learn about broadcasting and maybe discover your passions and talents, just like I did.”

The name change is also a key component of moving forward, said Emily Flynn, a producer and the head of SHU TV’s social media department.

“We decided to ask our team members what they thought would be a good choice and they chose SHU TV,” said Flynn, a sophomore visual and sound media major with a concentration in film production. “We wanted to branch off and become our own new brand and person, and there’s no better way than changing the name. That’s essential.”

SHU TV has gone through challenges in recent  years, including the COVID-19 pandemic and the studio flooding during Hurricane Ida in 2021.

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“I came in when we were still in the COVID transition and when the new studio [in the UC] was being built,” Marshman said. “In my freshman year, we were working out of the esports room up in Jubilee. There’s been a lot of unfortunate and unforeseen events that have happened, so, like I said, this downtrend really wasn’t anyone’s fault. You can’t control the weather; this was really out of our hands.”

Now, the club is looking to increase visibility and streamline their production procedure by moving from the Fahy television studio to the University Center studio. 

Marshman added that the Fahy studio is difficult to operate from, and an engineer like Paul Libassi or Albin Wicki needs to be there to fix issues that arise. But, of course, they have their own responsibilities, not to mention the many classes that use the studio.

“The UC is different,” Marshman said. “They built that for students to go in there and make things when students want to go in there and make things. It gives everyone more room to be creative; it really opens up a lot of doors not only for us, but for the rest of the kids that want to come in here and do things even if they’re not in VSM.”

Being in the UC also brings the bonus of potentially broadcasting SHU TV shows on the televisions there, according to Flynn. 

“We’re on YouTube,” Flynn said. “That’s where most of our things land. But we’re talking with Seton Hall to possibly broadcast our stuff on the televisions in the University Center. We used to have that in the past, but that was before they changed up the UC, so now we’re going to try to bring it back.”

Flynn added insight to the process of getting a show made for SHU TV, saying that anyone can create a show and put something on social media. She also framed show-making as a main goal of the new SHU TV.

“We’re going to try to be in the community as much as possible,” Flynn said. “We want to connect with people and ask them what they want us to create. We’re also currently redoing our logo and stuff like that. It’s more like, this is for the people in the Seton Hall community; we’re making stuff that’s meant for the people.”

Martinelli expanded upon the idea of SHU TV having a presence outside of the Seton Hall campus, mentioning how new students joining SHU TV will want to step outside of their comfort zones.

“Seton Hall students do an excellent job when they come in; they participate in DOVE and student outreach, but this is a chance for these students to move further after they first start here to create more and more,” Martinelli said. “I’m the advisor, and the advisor shouldn’t be telling you what to do. My job is just to be there and make sure you don’t make any drastic boo-boos. It’s about these students being creative enough to take risks, and if they fail, that’s okay. There’s no grade in this.”

Professor Martinelli also discussed SHU TV rebranding the PTV website and Flynn re-doing their socials. Pasculli said he was hopeful about the digital evolution of the club.

“With a greater presence online, people will be able to see what we do in this club,” Pasculli said. “They could ask, ‘Oh, what’s this about?’ and seek out more information about us and actually know about us when we go and do something. So, I think that would be really cool going forward.”

Long term, the club is looking at establishing Pirate TV+ and a Saturday Night Live-esque weekly show.

“It would be like ESPN+ and Disney+,” Martinelli said. “Under that umbrella would be SHU TV, the Setonian, and WSOU. So, they could actually really cross platforms and work together. No other school that I know of in New Jersey has anything like that.”

With such positive developments on the horizon, Flynn and the rest of the club are enthusiastic about what’s to come.

“We’re really excited for everyone to see this new change,” Flynn said. “To get out with the community more, and for people to, you know, be able to see things that they’re like, ‘Oh I told them about this idea, and they did it! That’s awesome!’ Creating this group of people that the entire Seton Hall community knows, kind of like WSOU. It would be great. That’s my dream.”

Jacqueline Litowinsky is a writer for the Setonian’s News section. She can be reached at


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